The French government has scrapped a provision that could cut off Internet access for those who downloaded copyrighted files illegally.
The so-called "three strikes" law brought first written warnings for infringement, then ultimately suspension of Internet access. The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) applauded the law.
But the French government is now taking a new approach, focusing its antipiracy efforts on commercial piracy, such as Internet sites that profit from infringing, rather than individuals, according to a statement by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication Tuesday.
Although suspended Net access is no longer an option, fines remain as a punishment.
Net access under the law has been suspended only in one case, an individual lost Internet access for 15 days and was fined 600 euros ($767), but cutting people off from Internet access has been a controversial issue. Shortly after approval of the law in 2009, the French Constitutional Council said Internet access was a human right. And in its statement Tuesday, the French ministry Internet Internet access has become a major means of access to culture, especially for young people.
A government journal on Monday logged the end of the decree, called the Hadopi law after the three-strikes law led to the creation of a public organization called the Haute Autorité pour la diffusion des uvres et la protection des droits sur internet.
The minister of culture and communication has named Mireille Imbert-Quaretta to lead new antipiracy work that involves several involved parties, including payment companies, advertising networks, search engines, and social networks.